Unpaid traffic ticket collection - 13 WTHR Indianapolis

Unpaid traffic ticket collection

Roger Harvey/Eyewitness News

Indianapolis, November 19 -  If you're in the habit of not paying traffic tickets, get ready to pay the price.

There's an aggressive campaign about to begin to collect millions in unpaid tickets and violators could end up with a mark on their credit report.

It's a scene no one wants to be a part of, a police officer pulling you over for a violation. Most people pay the fine, which in Marion County averages around $150. But the problem is a growing number of drivers don't send in a check.

How many people aren't paying their tickets? It turns out quite a few. According to our partners at the Indianapolis Star, court records show 20,000 to 25,000 fines are uncollected totaling at least $17 million.

So the Marion County courts hired a collection agency to help track down those who owe. Taxpayers seem to think its a logical way to help fund a lean budget.

Maureen Barlock said, "Anybody who speeds is a danger on the road and speed kills. So I agree they should collect and make them pay and be responsible for what they have done."

Fines unpaid for 120 days will get a collection letter, that affects tickets going back five years. 

The strongest encouragement to pay a traffic ticket is that  unpaid violations end up on your credit report.

"I feel like that is a pretty steep penalty and I guess it should depend on whether you have multiple outstanding tickets, then that is probably a step that needs to be taken for some folks," said Jed Cornforth

The message from police is simple, don't speed  and don't worry about a ticket and if you receive a fine, pay it before a collection agency finds you.

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